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Government officials release STEPS survey results in Saint Lucia

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Saint Lucia: Government officials from the Ministry of Health of Saint Lucia publish the results of 2019 and 2020 of the Pan American Health Organisation, also known as PAHO, ​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​STEP approach to noncommunicable diseases risk factors, a surveillance study that is often referred to as STEPS. The newsletter is published in consultation with stakeholders to widely spread the important health information to the public.

The Ministry of Health has asked the media to report on a stakeholder consultation starting at 11 am on Wednesday, 14 February. The event took place on the 5th floor of the Trous Financial Management Center, Castries.

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The STEPS study is a central tool in the collection, analysis and spreading of the data in relation to chronic diseases and the risk factors associated to them. These factors include tobacco and alcohol use, physical inactivity, unhealthy eating habits, obesity and high blood pressure.

Saint Lucia has participated in two STEPS studies to till now, among which the first was in 2012 and the other one in the month of October 2020. While highlighting the importance of this initiative, the Ministry emphasises the collaboration needed to strengthen the non-communicable disease profile of Saint Lucia.

Non-communicable diseases are a major health problem around the world, and diseases such as heart disease, diabetes and certain cancers cause significant morbidity and mortality. Understanding the prevalence and underlying factors of these diseases is critical for effective public health interventions and policy development.

The spreading of the results of the STEPS study in public should provide important information about the current state of health in Saint Lucia. By identifying trends in risk factors for Non-communicable diseases, policy makers and public health officials can tailor interventions to the specific needs of the population.

In addition, the availability of updated information allows monitoring the progress of interest groups, identifying areas that need special attention, and strategically using and allocating the resources of the nation. Through making decisions on the basis of evidence, Saint Lucia can create an environment that can promote healthy behaviours and reduce the burden of preventable diseases.

Stakeholder consultation is a forum for dialogue and collaboration between government agencies, non-governmental organisations, health professionals and the media. By making a strong partnerships and sharing collective expertise, stakeholders can increase the impact of interventions aimed at containment of the risk factors of the Non-communicable diseases and improving public health outcomes.

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The publication of the results of the 2019 and 2020 STEPS survey is an important milestone in Saint Lucia ongoing efforts to combat Non-communicable diseases. As the nation collectively participates in this effort, the Ministry of Health, Welfare and Ageing Affairs remains committed to promoting a healthier future for all Saint Lucians.

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